Outbreak of shootings is ‘very troubling, very heartbreaking’

Published: May. 27, 2023 at 11:27 PM EDT|Updated: May. 27, 2023 at 11:28 PM EDT
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AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - Richmond County deputies are investigating a shooting Saturday morning in downtown Augusta.

They say this happened around 1:25 am on Broad Street.

Deputies found three victims who’d been shot in their lower half.

It’s one of many cases that shows a rise in crime since April of last year.

In the past five months, there have been 26 homicides and suspicious deaths across the CSRA.

While not all recent crimes have been deadly, they’ve done enough to have an impact on the community.

“It’s, um, been, been pretty ugly? Um, a little bit on the rise, unfortunately, you know, I hate seeing our city, um, going through it,” General Manager of Pineapple Ink Tavern Juan Jose Rodriguez Delarosa said.

Juan Jose Jodriguez has called Augusta home his whole life.

With the most recent shooting on Broad Street is just a few blocks down from his job, he says it makes him wonder about his safety.

“It’s heartbreaking and it makes me, you know, question the doors outside my home, you know what I mean? Question what’s outside or the other side of my door. Um, it being my home, my home city, it is very, very troubling, very heartbreaking,” he said.

While there have only been a handful of incidents like this downtown, it’s a widespread feeling across the city.

Prior to the shooting on Broad Street, the most recent shootings happened on East Taylor Street on May 22, taking the life of an expecting mother and injuring two other people.

Just 9 days before, an argument between two rival motorcycle groups ended in a shooting that left two dead and three injured.

Of the CSRA’s 89 homicide and suspicious death cases since April of 2022, 46 took place in Augusta-Richmond County.

This reality is why Juan Jose says he hopes for a better future for his hometown.

“I just would love to see a lot more unity, a lot more love. It’s all about love and it’s all about fellowship and, and, um, and being with your fellow man,” he said.

News 12 reached out to the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office for more information on this latest shooting on Broad Street, but there’s still no word on the suspect.